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Sweep! NHL-best Lightning ousted in record speed by Columbus

17 April 2019

Tampa Bay tied the NHL record for regular-season wins with 62 and amassed 128 points, fourth in NHL history, but became the first team in the expansion era, which began in 1967-68, to go winless in the first round of the playoffs after leading the league in points.

Historically, the Blue Jackets are not a good playoff team.

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"We haven't changed our system, we haven't changed our philosophy, we've gotten some shots on the net and we're going to keep on doing that", says Columbus head coach John Tortorella, whose team has outscored the Lightning 12-2 since falling behind 3-0 in the series opener. In 2015, no one expected us to go anywhere, and we went far, with the same core of players. Matt Duchene, Oliver Bjorkstrand, and Cam Atkinson scored for Columbus in the win, with Sergei Bobrovsky making 30 saves, and Ondrej Palat providing Tampa Bay's lone marker.

With Columbus clinging to a 4-3 lead in the third period, Tampa Bay had wrested the momentum from the Blue Jackets but still couldn't solve Bobrovsky. Bjorkstrand went over Vasilevskiy's head on a power play for a 2-0 Columbus lead at 8:25, with rookie Alexandre Texier picking up his first National Hockey League assist.

"They were the better team", said Tampa Bay captain Steven Stamkos, who also didn't score until Game 4. But the tussle wasn't enough to jumpstart his team and Pittsburgh was swept for the first time since the 2013 Eastern Conference Finals.

Islanders 3, Penguins 1 - Jordan Eberle scored for the fourth straight game, Robin Lehner stopped 32 shots, and NY finished off Sidney Crosby and Pittsburgh at home for a stunning sweep.

It wasn't almost enough to stop the Islanders. If Tampa Bay won the Stanley Cup, the Blueshirts would have received their first round draft pick, which was part of the trade that sent Ryan McDonagh and J.T. Miller to the Lightning last season.

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Blue Jackets: 9-1-0, averaging 3.7 goals, 5.3 assists, 1.4 penalties and 3.1 penalty minutes while giving up 2.1 goals per game with a.923 save percentage. "It seems like the guys had fun in the last game in the third period and some chances and we're just going to build on that". The game went into overtime and Connor came through again for Winnipeg, this time with Scheifele collecting his own rebound and dishing it to Connor, who pushed it in for the win. The next two games have been a different story.

Tarasenko beat Hellebuyck with a wrist shot from the top of the left circle 35 seconds into the third period to give the Blues a 1-0 lead. Connor had the set up on Scheifele's tying goal and also crashed the net to pick up the OT victor that has the Jets heading home with some momentum.

The 2010 Washington Capitals lost in the first round after winning the Presidents' Trophy, but they at least pushed their series with the Montreal Canadiens to Game 7.

Binnington came up big on a point-blank chance from Scheifele early in the second, and Brandon Tanev hit the crossbar on a breakaway midway through the period. "No power plays. One PP in two games". After losing 4-1 at the Edmonton Oilers on March 21 they were one point behind the Montreal Canadiens for the second wild card. He hasn't practised since leaving Game 2.

Shea Theodore, Alex Tuch, and Jonathan Marchessault also scored for Vegas.

"At first I didn't let it flow as much as I wanted to".

The Sharks were without injured center Michael Haley and defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic.

In Game 3, it was a picture ideal snipe from a bad angle that tied the game just one minute after the Penguins had taken an early lead.

Sweep! NHL-best Lightning ousted in record speed by Columbus